After Gay Son’s Suicide, Mother Finds Blame in Herself and in Her Church

  • metta

    Posts: 39099

    Aug 25, 2012 6:28 AM GMT
    After Gay Son’s Suicide, Mother Finds Blame in Herself and in Her Church

    "But their son’s suicide has also forced changes, and new honesty, upon them. They have left the church that made Ms. Clementi so resistant to her son’s declaration. Their middle son, James, acknowledged what the family had long suspected and said that he, too, was gay. The family is devoting itself to a foundation promoting acceptance with the hope of preventing the suicides of gay teenagers.

    Most of all, Ms. Clementi has had to grapple with her own role in Tyler’s death."

    "She blames religion for the shame surrounding it — in the conversation about coming out, Tyler told his mother he did not think he could be Christian and gay."



    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/25/nyregion/after-tyler-clementis-suicide-his-parents-make-painful-changes-in-the-search-for-why.html?_r=2
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    Aug 25, 2012 6:49 AM GMT
    Great article. In my experience, it seems like parents can tend to forget that supporting your kid comes with both mental and physical support. Closeted kids especially need the mental support and when that lacks, no good.
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    Aug 25, 2012 7:05 AM GMT
    metta8 saidAfter Gay Son’s Suicide, Mother Finds Blame in Herself and in Her Church
    I thought this was going to be about the movie/documentary "Prayers For Bobby" ...srsly.
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    Aug 25, 2012 7:09 AM GMT
    metta8 said"She blames religion for the shame surrounding it — in the conversation about coming out, Tyler told his mother he did not think he could be Christian and gay."
    I can identify with Tyler. Being gay isn't the only reason I ditched Christianity and religion altogether, but it definitely played a significant role.

    In fact, the more stories like this I hear, the more I really wish I'd killed myself shortly after coming out to my parents. After being over 20 years, my mom still "prays for me every day" in hopes that I'll turn straight so I can go to heaven.

    And the more I hear/read stories like this, the more I think suicide may be the only way to change my mom's mind.

    Edit: I just texted her (she's asleep) and gave her the ultimatum. And I'm "dead" serious about it, because I'm truly not afraid of death.
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    Aug 25, 2012 1:09 PM GMT
    Sounds like Prayer for Bobby:
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    Aug 25, 2012 1:27 PM GMT
    HER SON IS TO BLAME... NOT HER NOT THE CHURCH.
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    Aug 25, 2012 1:46 PM GMT
    CDAVIS saidHER SON IS TO BLAME... NOT HER NOT THE CHURCH.


    NO ITS THE CHURCH AND THE MOTHER
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    Aug 25, 2012 2:02 PM GMT
    stupid said..


    This site needs Mods. Stupid comments like this, specially on a gay site are just disrespectful on so many ways.
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    Aug 25, 2012 2:11 PM GMT
    the sad thing about it - many evangelical christians could read this and it will not make one jot of difference.

    they will still hold the son as fully and totally responsible for his actions.

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    Aug 25, 2012 2:29 PM GMT
    CDAVIS saidHER SON IS TO BLAME... NOT HER NOT THE CHURCH.
    You must be a lucky man to never have experienced the suicide of a gay friend.

    I have. I've seen what it does to the family. In almost every case, the family soon understands why it happened, changes their minds about homosexuality, changes the minds of their friends, and begins fighting for gay rights.

    It truly is the church's fault. As more gays with such upbringings kill themselves, the churches will slowly realize they're the ones responsible for the killings...not the gay people themselves.
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    Aug 25, 2012 2:39 PM GMT
    paulflexes said
    metta8 said"She blames religion for the shame surrounding it — in the conversation about coming out, Tyler told his mother he did not think he could be Christian and gay."
    I can identify with Tyler. Being gay isn't the only reason I ditched Christianity and religion altogether, but it definitely played a significant role.

    In fact, the more stories like this I hear, the more I really wish I'd killed myself shortly after coming out to my parents. After being over 20 years, my mom still "prays for me every day" in hopes that I'll turn straight so I can go to heaven.

    And the more I hear/read stories like this, the more I think suicide may be the only way to change my mom's mind.

    Edit: I just texted her (she's asleep) and gave her the ultimatum. And I'm "dead" serious about it, because I'm truly not afraid of death.


    Regardless of whether you're not afraid of death, I'm sure that it's better if you are alive for as long as possible.
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    Aug 25, 2012 3:15 PM GMT
    Blackguy4you saidthe sad thing about it - many evangelical christians could read this and it will not make one jot of difference.

    they will still hold the son as fully and totally responsible for his actions.




    Very sadly, you're likely right. icon_sad.gif
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    Aug 25, 2012 3:33 PM GMT
    paulflexes saidAnd the more I hear/read stories like this, the more I think suicide may be the only way to change my mom's mind.

    Perhaps that's true, but hardly a good exchange. One Paul is worth more than a thousand mothers with mistaken beliefs. One live Paul speaking the truth is worth more than a dead Paul speaking nothing.

    And don't overestimate the martyr route. It's usually only the already receptive who may have a change of heart. The hard-of-heart will instead see a vindication of their prejudices, not a refutation, the martyrdom for naught.

    So put those thoughts out of your mind, Paul, and stick around for a while, if only to keep your mother preoccupied and away from even more harmful activities. If you wanna be a martyr do it that way, and draw some of her fire away from the rest of us. LOL!
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Aug 25, 2012 3:53 PM GMT
    paulflexes said
    metta8 said"She blames religion for the shame surrounding it — in the conversation about coming out, Tyler told his mother he did not think he could be Christian and gay."
    I can identify with Tyler. Being gay isn't the only reason I ditched Christianity and religion altogether, but it definitely played a significant role.

    In fact, the more stories like this I hear, the more I really wish I'd killed myself shortly after coming out to my parents. After being over 20 years, my mom still "prays for me every day" in hopes that I'll turn straight so I can go to heaven.

    And the more I hear/read stories like this, the more I think suicide may be the only way to change my mom's mind.

    Edit: I just texted her (she's asleep) and gave her the ultimatum. And I'm "dead" serious about it, because I'm truly not afraid of death.


    Paul, please do not kill yourself!!! Your mom may never understand that she's wrong, but this is not the answer.
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    Aug 25, 2012 4:21 PM GMT
    Reading stuff like this truly pisses me off !

    Guys the truth is there are Details we are NOT able to empathize with!

    How old was the son?
    Was the mom a controlling and emasculating parent?
    Where did this take place?

    Don't get me wrong..
    Personally there is no religion or church that will come between me and my own...But that's me

    Some people are SHALLOW, ABSORBANT and WEAK!

    AKA..The CHURCH that infected the mind of a PARENT who infected the mind of her SON !

    You get up on a pulpit and tell me one of my own..(or anyone) is not worthy ..Because of WHAT they are !! We will have deep, dark,painful bloody days!! .. icon_twisted.gif
    But that's me!

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    Aug 25, 2012 4:29 PM GMT
    Suicide under any circumstance is hard to deal with. My friend and co-worker just committed suicide this week. Took all of us by surprise, we had no idea. Still trying to wrap my head around it.

    I'm sure Tyler's mom is reliving all of her actions/reactions, second guessing herself. I just can't imagine the internal pain that she must be dealing with.

    Although ultimately it was Tyler's decision, it's sad when there are outside factors that push a person to that place where they see no way to escape the edge and make the decision to end it all. Nothing but tears for all of them. icon_cry.gif
  • jayatl56

    Posts: 463

    Aug 25, 2012 4:41 PM GMT
    It's a shame that the God of total and unbiased love - the God who created us in His image and likeness cannot be fully embraced by His people, His church. This is what's mind boggling to me. Jesus shunned no one! Why should we? What happened to "what you did to the least of these, you did to me"? I'm Catholic and go to Mass every Sunday. It's my personal relationship with God that matters to me, not what's spewed from the pulpits.
  • KissTheSky

    Posts: 1980

    Aug 25, 2012 4:42 PM GMT
    Religious fundamentalism is a form of mental illness.
    Trying to reason with these people is like talking to a senile person who is disconnected from reality.
    People who are encouraging young people to kill themselves and turning against their own children are just as evil, in my book, as the terrorists who blow up innocent people and fly planes into buildings. It's all violent insanity, justified in their twisted minds by nutty religious beliefs.

    These Christian Fudie's love to complain about the evils of "cults," but I would challenge them to find one cult that's done as much damage as they have.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Aug 25, 2012 4:46 PM GMT
    KissTheSky saidReligious fundamentalism is a form of mental illness.
    Trying to reason with these people is like talking a senile person who is disconnected from reality.
    People who are encouraging young people to kill themselves and turning against their own children are just as evil in my book as the terrorists who blow up innocent people and fly planes into buildings. It's all violent insanity, justified by nutty religious beliefs.

    These Christian Fudie's love to complain about the evils of "cults," but I would challenge them to find one cult that's done as much damage as they have.


    They are a cult!
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    Aug 25, 2012 4:53 PM GMT
    I thought this also.

    TerraFirma saidSounds like Prayer for Bobby:
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    Aug 25, 2012 5:02 PM GMT
    I have no respect for fundies, and their hate filled 'born again' dogma. The parents made a mistake (IMO) in attending that kind of church. Glad to hear they've disassociated themselves from that place. The thing to take away from this is just that there are plenty of religions that not only accept gay people, they embrace and love us unconditionally. Jesus taught love and acceptance. I found the Episcopal church to be just right for me, since I was wanting an intelligent, loving, accepting place to worship. (I know this is plugging, and I know there are a whole lot of other good churches and faiths). My point is to choose a faith that doesn't preach hate - whatever your beliefs.
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    Aug 25, 2012 5:03 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    paulflexes saidAnd the more I hear/read stories like this, the more I think suicide may be the only way to change my mom's mind.

    Perhaps that's true, but hardly a good exchange. One Paul is worth more than thousands of mothers with mistaken beliefs. One live Paul speaking the truth is worth more than a dead Paul speaking nothing.

    And don't overestimate the martyr route. It's usually only the already receptive who may have a change of heart. The hard-of-heart will instead see a vindication of their prejudices, not a refutation, the martyrdom for naught.

    So put those thoughts out of your mind, Paul, and stick around for a while, if only to keep your mother preoccupied and away from even more harmful activities. If you wanna be a martyr do it that way, and draw some of her fire away from the rest of us. LOL!


    +1

    don't be a dick
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    Aug 25, 2012 5:10 PM GMT
    People are so selfish and self-interested. I would almost have more respect for her had she maintained her Christian beliefs, even as she mourned her son's death. It's only when someone SHE loved kills himself that her beliefs are put into question.

    She couldn't figure out the cost of religious beliefs prior to this?

    And only when it overturns HER world does she then begin to challenge the church. And why? Because now she feels guilty about it and is worried about losing her second gay son.

    Selfish. Self-interested.

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    Aug 25, 2012 5:16 PM GMT
    The home and family should be the one place children (straight or gay) should find love, acceptance, and shelter.

    Unfortunately, more often than not, they aren't. So sad.

    I know I dared not try to come out to my parents when I was a teen or young adult. The drama would have been ridiculous.
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    Aug 26, 2012 1:18 PM GMT
    jayatl56 saidIt's a shame that the God of total and unbiased love - the God who created us in His image and likeness cannot be fully embraced by His people, His church. This is what's mind boggling to me. Jesus shunned no one! Why should we? What happened to "what you did to the least of these, you did to me"? I'm Catholic and go to Mass every Sunday. It's my personal relationship with God that matters to me, not what's spewed from the pulpits.
    Unfortunately thats the bullshit..

    your pulpit, your bullshit! and yes, it AFFECTS others by the EFFECT provided.